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Old 12-12-2011, 01:10 AM   #15
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Star Kitty, nice blog and nice trailer! I noticed an improvement in how the trailer towed, but I don't think our old axle was totally shot- I was not too springy and was causing rivets to shear from vibration, but I imagine it could be worse. The stories of wheels coming free made clinched it for me to decide to replace.
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Old 12-12-2011, 05:34 AM   #16
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Axle longevity?

How long are the axles supposed/ expected to last? What is the lifespan of the newer Dexter/ Dura Torque/... type axle? Any experience with newer axles failing after few years? Mine are needing replaced on my 68 Ambassador Int.
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Old 12-16-2011, 08:07 PM   #17
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I imagine ours were the originals, 1964. There were years that it wasn't on the road, but I don't know if it's better to use it to keep the rubber functional, or if it's a matter of adding mileage, that if it's off the road it preserves it. As repairs go, it's not too bad so every 15 years for piece of mind? Compared to driving a Volvo or Audi, it's dirt cheap!
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Old 12-16-2011, 10:05 PM   #18
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New Axles ordered.

Ordered new axles from Inland RV. Gotta pay alittle extra since I waited too long to check the old ones out and find they are resting nice and horizontal. It towed good coming from Tulsa to Arkansas when I bought it. While doing some clear coat stripping noticed some outriggers had rubbed through the aluminum siding. Also couple sheared rivets. So got down under it and looked at the axles. Horizontal as can be. Also got new shocks. Hopefully be here soon. Gotto have the trailer for Soon after new year.
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Old 12-16-2011, 10:09 PM   #19
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All torsion axles use rubber rods.

Rubber must be exercised to stay alive.

The downfall of the rubber rods, is the quality of the rubber, lack of use, and overloading.

Normally, with reasonable frequent use, the rubber rods should hold up for 25 to 30 years.

There are many trailers that are 40 years old, and the rubber is still doing an acceptable job, simply because those owners bought the trailer to use, and use it very often. But, axles have been replaced on trailers that are only 4 years old, because they were not used at all.

Basically, the more the trailer is used, the longer the axles will last, as well as the less they are used, the shorter their life.

There is no magic formula, just a rule of thumb.

Andy
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Old 12-17-2011, 07:45 PM   #20
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Axles

Thanks Andy. I plan on using mine. Soon after I get the new axles put on. I travel a lot for my job, and plan to pull it with me everywhere. Rolled my last one on the way to a job in New Orleans in March. Bad Karma I guess. Jim.
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Old 12-17-2011, 07:57 PM   #21
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I don't know why everybody continues to insist if the trailing arm is horizontal when the trailer weight is on it, the axle is shot. Per Henschen, Axis, Al-Ko,and Dexter, a torsion axle with a 22.5 degree starting angle will be at zero degrees when loaded to its capacity.
if you remove the weight, like jacking the trailer up off its wheels, and the trailing arm doesn't drop, then the rubber inside has hardened, and the axle will need to be replaced.
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Old 12-17-2011, 09:14 PM   #22
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denver , Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Globie64 View Post
Star Kitty, nice blog and nice trailer! I noticed an improvement in how the trailer towed, but I don't think our old axle was totally shot- I was not too springy and was causing rivets to shear from vibration, but I imagine it could be worse. The stories of wheels coming free made clinched it for me to decide to replace.
Thanks Globie. It's been fun for sure.

I don't think mine was shot either. I got two different visually inspected opinions and both parties said it was unnecessary. But I decided to replace it because most vintage owners recommended it.

I'm glad I did it for the piece of mind.
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Old 12-17-2011, 09:50 PM   #23
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As some wise soul once said:

"Use it or lose it!"

When we bought our 78 Ambassador three+ years ago, the axles had taken a 'set' and wouldn't retract fully when the weight was taken off of them...

From the existing notes that were on-board, the AS sat in storage for many years during the second half of it's life till then...

Those rubber rod 'muscles' do indeed become ineffective when they sit around without any exercise...

Andy fixed us up with a nice shiny new pair of axles that bolted right up without any difficulty...all it takes is $$$

When looking at an older AS to buy, it's probably best to just figure in the cost of new axle (s) with your purchase...

I can't say enough about the change in 'ride quality' after I'd changed the axles...we had taken 4 or 5 trips before the 'change', and it was all the difference in the world with the new axles and shocks installed!!!
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Old 12-18-2011, 08:14 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mexray View Post
As some wise soul once said:

"Use it or lose it!"

When we bought our 78 Ambassador three+ years ago, the axles had taken a 'set' and wouldn't retract fully when the weight was taken off of them...

From the existing notes that were on-board, the AS sat in storage for many years during the second half of it's life till then...

Those rubber rod 'muscles' do indeed become ineffective when they sit around without any exercise...

Andy fixed us up with a nice shiny new pair of axles that bolted right up without any difficulty...all it takes is $$$

When looking at an older AS to buy, it's probably best to just figure in the cost of new axle (s) with your purchase...

I can't say enough about the change in 'ride quality' after I'd changed the axles...we had taken 4 or 5 trips before the 'change', and it was all the difference in the world with the new axles and shocks installed!!!
Ray, did you notice "before" you would find loose or missing rivets inside, and did that stop when you replaced the axles?
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Old 12-18-2011, 09:30 AM   #25
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We installed a new axle on our 65 Safari 2 years ago. Before the install we did have sheared rivets inside and noticed the sharp jolts from the trailer through the hitch. After the install we gained 3" rise and a smooth as glass ride. We then installed a set of Centramatics and noticed an even smoother ride. Well worth the expense and effort IMO.
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Old 12-19-2011, 05:37 AM   #26
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axles

It isn't that the axles are just horizontal. My trailer is almost gutted, no weight on it now. Also, I had sheared rivets and missing rivets and the outriggers that had sliced through the lower skin. This is why I looked at the axles in the first place. But thats good advice to also check to see if they move when trailer is jacked up. Could save someone a few bucks if theirs are still good. I believe mine were the original axles from the condition of the outside. So, gonna throw some more money at it. At least till the insurance money runs out. Mery Christmas. Jim
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Old 12-26-2011, 10:09 PM   #27
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It's great to see all the responses. I towed ours Globie home 125 mi after the new axle was installed and didn't notice any sheared rivets, a positive change. It seems like a good investment for peace of mind, better if you can do it yourself, but worth $1k bucks to get it done right and quickly. I'm a lifelong DIYer but I have to draw the line somewhere.
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Old 12-27-2011, 05:28 AM   #28
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I replaced my axles 3 yrs ago. I gained 4 " in height ( the trailer did) and I did see a noticeable differnce in ride. Our TP would unroll,paper towel would unroll and there were popped rivets in the wheel well area.We would have cabinet doors open in transit. The final straw was we lost the mirror on the back of the bathroom door. We have rivets working in the interior also,you could tell by the little gray area around the rivet heads. We now leave things on the counter and on the couch andhave never had an open cabinet since I made the axle change. I think it was money well spent.
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